Film Review: ‘Deliver Us From Evil’ Goes Straight for the Jugular

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Average: 5 (1 vote)

CHICAGO – “Deliver Us from Evil” is director Scott Derrickson’s second foray into possession horror. His first, the excellent “The Exorcism of Emily Rose,” was taut, thoughtful and offered some truly unsettling demon scares…it still ranks as one of the most important and best of the new crop of possession/devil films it helped kickstart into being with their box office numbers. Like Emily Rose this film is very loosely based on actual accounts. In this case, the accounts of retired policeman Ralph Sarchie who left the NYPD to become a demonologist eventually writing the book from which the film gets its title. Oscarman rating: 4.0/5.0
Rating: 4.0/5.0

Ralph Sarchie (Eric Bana) is a cop clearly troubled by his job. Witness to the worst society has to offer, and beginning to bend under the psychic weight, he gets by on his wits, occasionally following up on hunches that put him in the crosshairs. One such call, involving domestic abuse, starts him and his partner Butler (Joel McHale) on a long and lethal investigation leading them from Iraq to the New York slums and beyond. It also leads Sarchie to Father Mendoza (Edgar Ramirez), a young priest with troubles of his own, and a strong ally in the fight against what is obviously a supernatural evil. 

Derrickson goes for the jugular right from the start with a shot that forms the basis of every policeman’s worst nightmare. It’s clear from the get go that Sarchie is the main character here and as we find out more about him the film leads inexorably to a point of resolve about his issues. The way it does that is far more interesting than anything else in the film. Bana is great, exuding the macho emotional remove of a man whose intense inward struggle to find meaning and forgiveness is at war with his secret sins and his fear of the unknown. With rage leaking out into every area of his life he’s in real danger of self destruction.

“Deliver Us From Evil” opens everywhere on July 2nd. Featuring Eric Bana, Édgar Ramírez, Olivia Munn, Joel McHale, Chris Coy and Sean Harris. Screenplay by Scott Derrickson and Paul Harris Boardman. Directed by Scott Derrickson. Rated “R”

StarContinue reading for Dave Canfield’s full review of “Deliver Us From Evil”

Eric Bana
Sarchie (Eric Bana) is On a Journey in ‘Deliver Us From Evil’
Photo credit: Screen Gems

StarContinue reading for Dave Canfield’s full review of “Deliver Us From Evil”

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